While cities across the world are getting smarter and India has embarked upon a mission to make at least 100 cities smarter, a report released by JLL said that with increased use of technology, cities must be ready for cyber security risks that accompany the growing adoption of tech-enabled real estate and infrastructure.
The report titled ‘Clicks and Mortar: The Growing Influence of Proptech’ commissioned by JLL, analysed the convergence of real estate and technology in 13 markets across the region and the ways that emerging technologies are being applied to connect urban real estate, infrastructure and services.
The report, however, points that as the real estate industry becomes more technologically advanced, it has increased exposure to such risks. Though many proptech start-ups service the residential market, the commercial sector is not immune. In fact, property owners and tenants face pressures due to the rise of smart buildings where they have building management systems on their smart phones.
“Many of the exciting innovations being developed in the proptech sector, such as smart home controls or drones for property management, have the potential to improve user experience, and save time, money and energy. While we are committed to harnessing the latest technology to provide new products and services, we also have to consider the implications of data security and privacy as the sector evolves,” said George Thomas, CIO, JLL Asia Pacific.
The report said that BIoT (blockchain and Internet of Things) is a technology that may be used to combat risks. It said that along with the continued development of advanced proptech tools, cyber policy initiatives are underway across the region, as governments work towards reinforcing domestic information systems security, collaborating with international partners for intelligence sharing, improving threat identification, and protecting critical infrastructure.
In what could be one of the most impressive tech trends in 2018, the convergence of blockchain and IoT may be one solution to combating cyber risks. BIoT is expected to unleash a new range of services and businesses, among which smart buildings and homes would benefit. BIoT would allow real-time access to data from sensors, with blockchain offering protection. Most importantly, it would build trust, reduce time and accelerate transactions.
“As the proptech space evolves there are huge opportunities for real estate owners and occupiers. Smarter cities and workplaces bring incredible prospective value. But in order to reap their full benefits, we have to prioritise systemic resiliency to ensure we manage the potential risks,” said Albert Ovidi, COO, JLL Asia Pacific.
Over the last few years countries across the world have been working towards making their cities smart through various tech initiatives. While India announced its intention to transform 100 municipalities with its Smart Cities Mission, China has taken initiatives to transform more than 500 cities into smart cities. Japan and Korea already claim to have smart city projects. Singapore is progressing its Smart Nation vision, which was launched in 2014, and on 18 March, a $23 million ASEAN-Australian investment fund was announced to support smart cities in Southeast Asia.
While Proptech is a key tool in future development of cities, particularly in smart property development and management Ovidi said, “Digital infrastructure investment is increasingly important for cities to create more liveable environments and attract and retain the best talent…”